One time while my sister and I were visiting my parents on vacation we played a game that had the potential to go all KINDS of wrong: “Which kid is the best at…”
The idea was that we’d shout out a quality and they had to decide who they thought was the best at that quality out of the three of us: me, my sister and my brother.
We’re all grown ups, and we know ourselves pretty well, so we thought it was a pretty safe game. Obviously our parents love us all the same (or at least that’s the line all parents feed their children) but we aren’t exact replicas of each other. We have different skill sets. So we played.
I don’t remember most of what came out of it except that my brother has the best survival skills and is probably the most resourceful of us. My sister is the most parental. She’s also the most empathetic and most likely to put her needs last and do for others, maybe to a fault. (If you’re reading this, you know you do this, but you’re wonderful, so whatever…be yourself!)
I’m the logical one. I may not be the most practical (that one goes to my sister) but I am logical to a fault. I use my brain (and usually ONLY my brain) to make decisions based on empirical evidence, past experience and knowledge. I do not…
I repeat, DO. NOT.
…use my heart or emotions to influence my life. And no, it’s not healthy.
I’m the super logical one. I look at all the evidence in front of me and fit it into the big picture of my decisions/life. The paradox of it is that by not consulting my heart or emotions, I’m actually NOT looking at all the evidence at all, am I? So by being so extremely logical, I’m actually failing at being logical.
What’s fun and interesting to me is that those closest to me know this about me without me saying it out loud or writing it down on paper (or typing it, whatever.) These are the people who champion me when I consider my feelings on something. These are the people who stand behind me ready to catch me when I go out on a limb. These are the people who high five me (usually virtually) when I take a step back; from being logical; from giving percentages for how well something might work if I do this… or this… or this.
In true logical fashion, I like to consider the alternative. What if I only consulted my emotions to make life decisions? I assume that all the times I’d fall I’d still have someone to catch me, but those people would roll their eyes when I did something similar 6 months later.
I’m still working hard to balance the two: head and heart. Using just one of the two is like working with only half a brain; half the tools; half the evidence. It’d be like building a house with 2 exterior walls. It’s going to be a struggle for me probably for always, but it’s wonderful to know that there are people in my life who cheer me on. Some even push me to use my heart more (they’re insane, if you ask my logical self.) It’s wonderful because there’s always a chance that I may fall flat on my face. But that doesn’t scare me so much knowing no one would ever tell me “I told you so!” or “See? It wasn’t even worth it!”
Those are true friends. People who truly GET me.
Do you fall on one side of the logical/emotional scale? Or are you healthily in the middle? Ever played this game with your family?